ICARUS is a moving sculpture, roaming art gallery and music stage all in one. It has traversed the playa at Burning Man and will be touching down at MLUSA this June to host three days and nights of musical programming. We hit up Brandon Robinson from the collective behind this striking art installation to tell us a bit about the project and the community behind it.
Describe Icarus in 5 words. Retro. Starship. Community. Art. Stage.
What inspired the creation of the ship? What was the process like in turning the initial concept into a tangible structure?
Inspired by films Elysium, Star Wars and the show Firefly it is a retro view of future space travel, low tech, dirty, mechanical.
Starting with this spaceship concept and a general idea of size and layout the search was on for the correct base vehicle. Not satisfied with what was available and street legal we landed upon a surplus military aircraft loader. From there the design started to take its form and was built and stress tested in CAD. We decided on a workspace in Philadelphia and most of the build schematics went there where we did the majority of the structure as it is now. Many tons of steel later it was trucked off to the Black Rock Desert to be assembled with components built on the west coast. The talent in our local arts community brought us engineers, electricians, designers and volunteers of all levels. The original sound was a used IMAX center channel sound system, now replaced with higher end sound but keeping the look that we loved of those original cabinets that fit well with our design.
What’s the best part about being in the Icarus family? ICARUS is by all means a community art project, we sought to bring people together, inspire those who need to see how dreams become reality all the time. By bringing skilled and unskilled alike we collectively can help each other problem solve, learn to have faith in our individual selves and work as a team to aid each other in ridiculousness and the spreading of inspiration and wonder.
Can you share one thing nomads would be surprised to know about your collective? This ship is a testament to how removing our egos and accepting our true selves, strengths as well as flaws can amount to something truly great.
Mysteryland is the first (and only) festival to take place on the Bethel Woods site since Woodstock 1969. Does Woodstock inspire you in anyway, and if so, how? As I was growing up, overhearing talk of Woodstock told me it was a spectacle, a huge celebration, something that blew people away and was a surprise gathering. To me it always stuck in the back of my head that there were these mass gatherings of artistic types looking to enjoy the most fulfilling parts of life, that of personal connection. It is an honor to be helping create this sort of event on those exact grounds of legend.